Spinal cord injuries are among the most common catastrophic injuries that workers face on a construction site. Damage to your spinal cord can result in permanent changes to your sensation, function and strength below the injury site. As you recover from your injury, you may no longer be able to work or enjoy the hobbies that you once did.
Following an SCI, you may have a long road ahead of you, but there are ways you can learn to adjust to your new life.
Rehabilitation is critical following an SCI. You may attend rehabilitation as an inpatient or on an outpatient basis. People often spend time in inpatient rehabilitation before attending an outpatient program. During rehabilitation, your team will work with you to increase your stamina and strength.
You also develop routines to help you function. For example, rehabilitation may teach you new techniques for showering. When you return home, you integrate your new skills into your life.
Depending on the severity of your spinal cord injury, you might lose all or some function in your limbs. SCIs can also affect your ability to breathe, control your bladder or feel hot and cold sensations. Adjusting to these significant changes in your life can leave you feeling anxious or depressed. It is normal to feel different after an SCI, but if you struggle with your body image or caring for yourself, you should seek support to help you through the changes.
Finding ways to adjust to life post-SCI will decrease your risk of depression and help you find purpose in your life again.
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